A school bond issue that has obliterated political middle ground in the Basehor-Linwood school district will go before voters this week.
District voters will decide Tuesday whether to fund a $13.95 million bond issue whose centerpiece is construction of a high school in Basehor. The proposal was defeated in November by a 55-45 percent margin, marking the second time in a year that Basehor-Linwood voters had rejected a new high school.
"Two times you have said no to their nightmare project priced nearly twice as high as the value of the work needed," said one of the 13 letters about the proposal in last week's Basehor Sentinel. "On Jan. 31, please get everyone out to vote no for the third time on this foul bond question."
The writer: Frank Ingels, a school board member who, along with fellow member John Sawka, has spearheaded opposition to the proposal.
In another letter, board member Twila Heinen referred to Ingels and Sawka as "power-hungry" and accused them of using "plain harassment" to attack the plan.
Board discussions of the proposal have carried a similar tone. Heinen has accused Ingels of lying to voters and sabotaging the November election, for instance, while Ingels has contended that supporters released misleading information about the issue's cost and impact on taxpayers.
District administrators said the proposal would raise the district's levy by 22 mills. A mill is $1 of tax for every $1,000 of assessed property value. Under district estimates, the owner of an $80,000 home would see his or her tax bill rise $202.44 a year if the bond issue passes.
Neither group has argued the necessity of new schools.
Ron Grover, chairman of a proponent group known as Save Our Schools, said projected 1995-96 enrollment at Basehor-Linwood High School was 520 students. The school's capacity is listed at 525, and the district is growing by 6 percent a year.